Deepest diving submersible (In service)
Last updated: June 4, 2020 at 0:14 am
The DSV Limiting Factor (Triton 36000/2 model submersible) dived four times to the bottom of the Challenger Deep in April-May 2019, including the deepest dive ever made by a submersible to 10,925 m / 35,843 ft (verified by DNV GL). The submersible piloted by Victor Vescovo is also the first and only submersible to have dived to the deepest point in all five oceans, which was accomplished between December 2018 and August 2019. During the course of the Five Deeps expedition, the Limiting Factor passed all of its qualification tests and was ranted commercial certification by DNV GL. This makes Limiting Factor the first and only full-ocean depth-capable submersible to meet commercial safety standards and be granted commercial operating certification. All previous submersibles achieving such depths were considered experimental. As of June 2020, Limiting Factor is still the deepest-diving operational submersible, with ongoing explorations in the Western Pacific slated for June-July 2020. (DSV: Deep-submergence vehicle)
PREVIOUS RECORD: The Deepsea Challenger (DCV 1) reached the bottom of the Challenger Deep in 2012. The 7.3-m (24 ft) submersible piloted by James Cameron was the second manned vehicle to touch the deepest known point on the planet. The Japanese research submersible Shinkai 6500 has reached a depth of 6,526 m (21,411 ft) in the Japan Trench. Russia’s Mir I and Mir II submersibles have a maximum operating depth of 6,000 m (20,000 ft). France’s Nautile also has a maximum operating depth of 6,000 m (20,000 ft). Both of the Mir submersibles have made several dives to the wreck of the RMS Titanic.